Exquisite Wari Chora in Meghalaya – South Garo Hills Tourism

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Are you looking for a travelogue and guide to Wari Chora and places under South Garo Hills Tourism? If Yes, you are in the right place.

The popular tourist circuit of Meghalaya includes the districts of Khasi and Jaintia Hills. Tourists who love sightseeing or adventure visit places like Shillong, Sohra, Wahkhen, Dawki, Phe Phe Falls, Mawsynram and Mawryngkhang among others.

The Garo Hills located in the western part of Meghalaya have finally started receiving the tourism exposure it deserves. This article is especially about the tourism of South Garo Hills.

Learn about places like the exquisite Wari Chora, Dombe Wari, Aginma Wari, Jadisil Fish Sanctuary, Siju Cave, Balpakram National Park, Renang Dare, Mengo Kol and many others.

Wari Chora Meghalaya Travel Guide - The Gypsy Chiring
The Magnificence of Wari Chora in Garo Hills Meghalaya

South Garo Hills Tourism

Before Wari Chora became a favourite tourist spot of Meghalaya, the Garo Hills were mostly visited only for the harvest festival known as 100 Drums of Wangala of the Garo Ethnic group.

The discovery and focus of the local youths and organizations like Baghmara Campers have helped in promoting the tourism scope and Garo folk culture of the South Garo Hills district in Meghalaya.

1. Wari Chora Meghalaya

Best Time to Visit Wari Chora Meghalaya- The Gypsy Chiring
Canyons, Waterfalls and Calmness!

Wari Chora Tour – the Start of an Adventure

On April 7th, we started our journey from Guwahati led by our guide Tangseng of Baghmara Campers. A group of new travel friends from Shillong, West Bengal, Mumbai and Assam boarded the traveller vehicle to start the journey to a paradise called – Wari Chora.

Guwahati to Wari Chora how to reach - The Gypsy Chiring
The hills as we entered the North Garo Hills district.

We followed the route starting from Guwahati-Boko-Dhupdhara-Dudhnoi-Damra-Wageasi-Rongmil-Rongjen-Nengkhra-Nongalbibra-Jadi-Siju-Karukol-Baghmara. Baghmara is the headquarter of the South Garo Hills District of Meghalaya.

How to Reach Wari Chora from Shillong Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
Somewhere near Wageasi

We stopped at Dudhnoi in Assam for lunch and at Pathargittim in South Garo Hills on our way to Baghmara.

Pathargittim Viewpoint in South Garo Hills

A journey that started at 11 am ended at 9 pm in Baghmara. The excitement and thoughts of seeing the canyons and the misty world of Wari Chora the next day made us forget how tiring the journey was.

Government Tourist Cottages in Baghmara

On the second day, I went for a solo morning walk along the main road. As I felt the fresh breeze of Baghmara, a person returning from a walk greeted me at Tourist Office Campus. We introduced ourselves and spoke about Garo Hills. I loved the view of the distant Hills covered by clouds and birds chirping that morning.

View of Baghmara Town in South Garo Hills from Tourist Office - The Gypsy Chiring
View of Baghmara Town in South Garo Hills from Tourist Office
Wari Chora Tour with Baghmara Campers in South Garo Hills Meghalaya
New Friends from Shillong & Assam with our guide Tangseng at Baghmara

2 hours of travel awaited us till Emangre. We reached Emangre around 9 am. The Saturday Market in Emangre locally known as Emangre Salantini Bajal was in full swing. While waiting for our 4×4 Vehicle we bought a few eatables and spent our time at the bank of river Rongdik.

Emangre Salantini Bajal - Emangre Weekly Market near Wari Chora - The Gypsy Chiring
Emangre Salantini Bajal – Emangre Weekly Market
Rongdik River -Emangre Village in Baghmara South Garo Hills - Wari Chora- The Gypsy Chiring
Rogdik River in Emangre

The Offroading Experience to Wari Chora

The road from Emangre Village to Rekmangre starts opposite the Market Area. We hopped on the 4×4 Vehicle for the offroad adventure. I stood at the front to make space and for a better view.

Ready for the adventure!
Rekmangre road from Emangre to Wari Chora off road - The Gypsy Chiring
Rekmangre road from Emangre

Though the Rekmangre road was bumpy, rugged and steep, I loved the view from the top.

Wari Chora Meghalaya Tour Road - The Gypsy Chiring
The Power of the 4x4s

After the settlement area, we crossed through the Emangre Community Reserve Forest. On one side was the valley and high distant hills and on the other some betel nut trees.

Rekmangre Road to Wari Chora Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
Rekmangre Road

This experience of going off-road on steep roads reminded me of two past experiences. Firstly, how I used to lie on the top of such vehicles while bringing harvested paddy from the fields during my childhood. Secondly, exploring a riverside at Dambuk in Arunachal Pradesh.

It took about 40 minutes to reach the starting point of the trek. Tea stalls and snacks can be found after entering the gate.

Wari Chora Parking Space Starting Point - The Gypsy Chiring
Tea Stalls near the Parking Spot
Wari Chora Entry Fee Counter - The Gypsy Chiring
The trek starts near the entry fee ticket counter (left)

Wari Chora – About & Meaning

Wari Chora is the land of the Seven Giant Serpents. Wari is a Garo word that translates to deep water while Chora refers to long. It is a place surrounded by canyons and the tranquil turquoise water of river Rongdik passes through it.

The Rongdik River flows from Wari Chora to Jawai Wari through Aginma Wari and then to Emangre joining the Simsang River in Siju and eventually entering Bangladesh.

River Rongdik in The Land of the Seven Giant Serpents.

Wari Chora is not a village but a newly developed offbeat tourist spot in between Pharomgre & Rekmangre Village of South Garo Hills of Meghalaya.

Wari Chora was first explored and promoted by Sir Bhuto Marak & his team.

The Indigenous Agro Tourism Cooperative Society Limited of Pharomgre & Rekmangre Village, Emangre Region Combine Tourism looks after the tourism of Wari Chora & Dombe Wari.

Things to do in Wari Chora

Trekking

A trek of 1.5 km downhill to Wari Chora starts from a cleared land into the forest. The first part of the trail is mostly plain and easy. Local guides both from Baghmara Campers and the village accompanied us.

One hour trek to Wari Chora Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
With our tour guide of Baghmara Campers at the starting point of the trail.

Walking for a few minutes, you will see a resting hut alongside a betel tree-cultivated area. The actual forest trail starts from this point.

Rest Point during Wari Chora Trek Trail
A rest house of the betel nut cultivator & perhaps for hikers.

The more you descend the steeper the trail gets. There are stairs made of tea branches to make the descent easier.

Wari Chora Trekking Trail - The Gypsy Chiring
The Steep Stairs
Wari Chora Trekking Trail - South Garo Hills Tourism - Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The Stairs to Paradise? Of course!

Our excitement grew on hearing the sound of the river. Walking for a few more minutes, we reached our destination.

Wari Chora South Garo Hills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The trail (left) ends here.
Wari Chora Tourist Spot South Garo Hills in Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
On the ride to Paradise.

During the weekend particularly on Saturday & Sunday, both domestic and tourists from the different parts of the country visit the Wari Chora tourist spot.

Wari Chora Meghalaya Tour Package - South Garo Hills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The Wait for a Ride!

There were limited kayaks and boats. As we waited for our turn, we made the best of the wait by diving and swimming in the clear waters of the Rongdik River.

The joy of being in the water.
Kayaking

The local guides took us on a ride inside the canyons with the help of Canoes, Kayaks and Rafts.

The Gypsy Chiring in Wari Chora Meghalaya - South Garo Hills
With Pangkam

I boarded a single kayak with a Garo guide. Though we couldn’t understand each other’s language, I tried building a rapport by asking him “Nangni Biming Ma?” which translates to “What is your name?” in Garo. He replied, “Pangkam.”

Wari Chora meghalaya Wiki - The Gypsy Chiring
The start of the kayak ride.

The Canyons looked like the layers and heads of serpents as we kayaked ahead into the river. The passage narrowed and the sound of the gushing waters of the waterfall roared.

Wari Chora Photos South Garo Hills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The Roaring Waterfall. Photo by Abhirup

Awestruck! Yes, I was awestruck everywhere I laid my eyes on. The play of the sun’s rays through the leaves with the colours of the rocks turned the water more turquoise.

Wari Chora Tour Package - Meghalaya - Baghmara - The Gypsy Chiring
The thrill of Kayaking!

The ambience inside the canyon is magical. The Rongdik River which otherwise flows with power, calms down at Wari Chora. The sensation of water droplets falling from above, the dance of the reflection of light from the water into the rocks and the sight of the tree branches hanging along the passage were beautiful and my favourite moments.

Wari Chora Meghalaya -South Garo Hills Tourism - The Gypsy Chiring
Nature’s wondrous creation of beauty.
Photo captured by my friend Abhirup during our trip.
Swimming

I am that soul who loves to take a dip whenever I see water. The temptations of Meghalaya’s clear blue waters are such that you can never resist diving or swimming in them.

Our guide mentioned that the depth of the river is about 45 ft. If you don’t know how to swim, a life jacket is a must.

I initially thought the kayak ride would involve just a round tour without stopping anywhere. Crossing through the passage of a fallen tree log we reached an area no sort of a wonderland.

Wari Chora Meghalaya - South Garo Hills Tourst Places
The spot where the guide drops you. Photo by Abhirup
Waterfalls in Wari Chora Canyon in South Garo Hills Meghalaya- The Gypsy Chiring
Nature’s Elegance!

If you are a beginner in swimming, you can swim in two spots in Wari Chora. Once at the start or later in the spot where the Raft drops you in the shallow waters inside the canyon.

Embracing happiness! My favourite among the Wari Chora Photos

In the world of greenish-brown layered canyons, when I spread my arms and glanced above, I felt like time had slowed down. The tiny drops of water fell from above with elegance and calmness.

Cliff Jumping

Though we didn’t do cliff jumping that day. Here is a video by Mukesh Rabha and locals of cliff jumping at Wari Chora. Wearing a life jacket will ensure safety during the activity.

Helpful tips for Wari Chora Trip in Meghalaya

1. Start early from Shillong or Guwahati. This will help you explore Siju Cave and reach Emangre or Baghmara before sundown.

2. Carry a waterproof ocean bag to carry your camera gear or phone at Wari Chora. I had to repair my phone after the trip as I didn’t take the bag. I saw the phones of others falling into the water too.

3. Support local tourism initiatives such as Baghmara Campers for organizing the tour for you. Since most trails and tourist spots in South Garo Hills are new, locals are the best guides.

4. Make sure you visit Wari Chora on the weekdays to avoid the crowd of tourists on weekends.

All Answered FAQs on Wari Chora Meghalaya

Where is Wari Chora in Garo Hills?

Wari Chora is in the South Garo Hills District of Meghalaya.

Which village is Wari Chora in?

Wari Chora is in Rekmangre Village between Pharomgre and Emangre Village under the Baghmara subdivision of the South Garo Hills District of Meghalaya.

What is the nearest airport to Wari Chora?

The Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International (LGBI) Airport at Borjhar of Guwahati in Assam is the nearest airport to Wari Chora.

What is the nearest railway station to Wari Chora?

The Dudhnoi Railway Station in Goalpara is the nearest railway station to Wari Chora. Dudhnoi is the last town in Assam before entering the East Garo Hills District of Meghalaya.

How to reach Wari Chora from Guwahati ?

The best option to reach Wari Chora is to contact Baghmara Campers, an eco-tour agency based in Baghmara of South Garo Hills in Meghalaya. They will arrange your transportation and the entire tour from Guwahati & Shillong.

Alternatively, you have to travel to Tura by sumos or buses from Guwahati. There is no direct transportation to Wari Chora. You can either opt for a private vehicle or join a trip with Baghmara Campers.

How to reach Wari Chora from Shillong?

From Shillong, buses and sumos go to Tura in the evening and morning respectively. From Tura, you will have to rent a vehicle to Wari Chora. It takes around 7-8 hours to Tura. This means, that if you go by public transport, you will reach Emangre or Baghmara very late at night.

I would personally suggest, that you take the help of Baghmara Campers – a local Garo Adventure Company to arrange transportation directly from Shillong.

What is the best time to visit Wari Chora?

The best time to visit Wari Chora is from November to April i.e. before and after the rainy months. It can also be visited till the first week of May if it doesn’t rain much.

To get a live update on the weather and whether it’s a favourable time to visit, you can always contact Mark from Baghmara Campers.

Is Wari Chora open?

Wari Chora is open for tourists from the 1st of November, 2023. You can contact the local tour operators and local guides to visit Wari Chora.

What is Wari Chora also known as?

Wari Chora is also known as the land of the seven giant serpents.

Is Wari Chora Worth Visiting?

Yes, Wari Chora has paved the way for adventure tourism in the South Garo Hills of Meghalaya. After visiting the place, you will not only fall in love with the place but also with the culture of the Garo ethnic group.

Is Wari Chora’s location on Google Maps?

No, the land of the giant seven serpents cannot be seen on Google Maps. You have to hire local guides or contact Baghmara Campers to provide a guide for you.

How much time does it take to reach Wari Chora?

From Guwahati or Shillong to Baghmara or Emangre it takes around 7-9 hours.

From Emangre Village to the Wari Chora trek start point, it is another 8 km off-road which took us about half an hour.

How long is the trek to Wari Chora?

The 1.5 km trek to Wari Chora takes hardly 25-30 minutes while descending. However, it is the uphill climb of returning back to the parking spot that consumes more time. Depending you don’t rest much while coming up, the trek would take 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Tell us about Wari Chora Homestay & Hotel

For the Wari Chora Homestay accommodation, new homestays are coming up in villages like Emangre and Baghmara Town.

We stayed at the Government Tourist Office in Baghmara as arranged by our organizer Baghmara Campers.

Wari Chora Hotel, Tourist Information Centre- Baghmara South Garo Hiills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
Way to Tourist Cottages at Baghmara.
Whom to contact for the Wari Chora Meghalaya Tour Package?

For the Wari Chora Meghalaya Tour Package contact Baghmara Campers, an eco-tour agency based in the South Garo Hills of Meghalaya. You can refer to the photo below to get in touch with Baghmara Campers.

Baghmara Campers - South Garo Hills, Meghalaya Tourism
Feel the Spirit of Garo Hills with Mark, Tangsen & their team.

PLEASE NOTE: A lost tourist who went solo was recently rescued by the villagers from the middle of a forest. Therefore, I recommend you hire a local guide or tour company to go to Wari Chora.

2. Dombe Wari

Dombe Wari is a culturally significant place in the South Garo Hills of Meghalaya. It is located just before reaching the Wari Chora parking spot. You can see it to the right on your journey from Emangre to Wari Chora. We visited Dombe Wari while returning to Emangre.

According to Garo folklore, the gorgeous woman Dombe lived in a Treehouse with her husband Joreng to avoid the attack & capture by the villainous mermen (mermaids who were men). When the mermen found the couple, they brought down the house along with the Banyan Tree engulfing Dombe in it. This is how the calm Dombe Wari was formed.

Dombe Wari in Emangre - South Garo Hills Meghalaya
Mark from Baghmara Campers at Dombe Wari

During our stay at Tourist Cottages at Baghmara, our guide Tangsen narrated the story and suggested we watch the film Dombe Wari by Doordarshan Tura. We listened to the story from them and then watched the story on youtube.

Pretty Ch. Marak on the Northeast Today portal has beautifully narrated the folklore and story of Dombe Wari.

3. Aginma Wari

Aginma Wari is a fish Sanctuary located beside Jamrik Rural Tourist Resort about 3 km from the Emangre Market area. Aginma Wari and Jamrik Rural Tourist Resort are run by Eman Warima Rural Tourism Cooperative Society Ltd.

After visiting Dombe Wari, we headed to Aginma Wari where our organiser had arranged our lunch. We were hungry but the refreshing air felt on the ride after the rejuvenating experience at Wari Chora was satisfying.

Aginma Wari Emangre South Garo Hills Meghalaya
Aginma Wari. Photo by Juby Shylla during our trip.
Lunch at Aginma Wari

Aginma Wari & Jawa Wari also have the scope for tourism. The turquoise waters of the Rongdik River and the fish conservation practice have gradually been able to attract tourists.

4. Jadisil Fish Sanctuary

Jadisil Fish Sanctuary is located at Tolegre Village about 28 km from Emangre Salantini Bajal (Weekly Market Area). Jadisil is an initiative of the locals and the Department of Fisheries of the Meghalaya government. This combined effort has helped the local fish species to flourish and increase their population.

By the time we set out on our journey towards Jadisil Fish Sanctuary, the sun was about to set. We reached the sanctuary just before it became fully dark.

On the way to Jadesil fish sanctuary in South Garo Hills - The Gypsy Chiring
The Trail to Jadisil Fish Sanctuary

The hike to Jadisil starts from Tolegre Village Playground. After crossing a few river streams, we climbed the stairs to the right and finally saw a signboard of the sanctuary.

Jadisil Fish Sanctuary - Jadesil - Tolegre Garo Hills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
1-minute walk to the sanctuary

Before heading to the sanctuary, the villagers sold us parched rice (muri) to give to the fish.

The fishes Pose!

The healthy fishes would round me up as I offered them parched rice. We saw local kids cliff-jumping at the sanctuary too.

jadisil Fish Sanctuary in Tolegre Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
My reaction – when I saw them coming towards me.

Here’s a Facebook post by our guide on Jadisil Fish Sanctuary –

5. Siju Cave

We explored Siju Cave on the 3rd i.e. last day of our trip. Siju Cave is situated about 38 km from Baghmara Town and takes around 2 hours to reach.

Simsang River near Siju Cave South Garo Hills Meghalaya- The Gypsy Chiring
Simsang River View near Siju Cave

The trail to Siju Cave is well-marked and follows well-constructed concrete steps till the beginning of the cave.

Siju Cave Photos in South Garo Hills Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The Natural Tunnel to the Home of Bats. Photo by Abhirup.

Like Krem Mawmluh in Sohra, Siju Cave in South Garo Hills is one of the longest cave systems in Asia. It is also known as the Bat Cave.

Siju Cave Location - South Garo Hills - Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
Fascinating right?

The sun lights up the entrance of the cave. But as we ventured more into the cave, it turned darker. I used my head torch to navigate in the cave.

Siju Cave of South Garo Hills in Meghalaya - The Gypsy Chiring
The river in the cave.

We crossed a small river stream by a huge boulder to reach the raised surface of the cave. As we looked up we saw hundreds of bats hanging upside down. It transported us mentally to the cave of Batman in the DC Universe. The ambience was the same.

Siju Cave Map- The Gypsy Chiring
The end of the cave but the start of the Bat’s Universe

Conclusion

I hope this article serves as a guide to exploring places like Wari Chora, Aginma Wari, Dombe Wari, Jadisil Fish Sanctuary and Siju Cave in South Garo Hills of Meghalaya. Make sure to follow the tips above to avoid any issues.

Credits go to the local Garo people of the South Garo Hills district for their efforts to promote eco-tourism. Let’s promote their initiatives and contribute to the local economy.

Baghmara Campers organises tours in all the districts of Garo Hills and Meghalaya. I would highly recommend you contact them to explore the beautiful places of Garo Hills.

Considering the places are new to the tourism realm, we as tourists and tour operators must ensure that over-tourism doesn’t take over.

This trip to South Garo Hills can be your opportunity to learn about the unique culture of the Garo ethnic group. Ecotourism, cultural tourism and nature tourism are the way ahead.

Mark these destinations to your Meghalaya Tourist Map for your next visit to the state.

Apart from the destinations mentioned in the article, here are 6 new tourist places in South Garo Hills

1. Menggo Kol

2. Balpakram Peak

3. Darechikgre

Darechikgre Garo Hills Meghalaya Photo
Credits: Tanvi Maraka Via Baghmara Campers

4. Rangram Pattal

5. Krangchusrik Wari

6. Renang Dare Waterfall

Renang Dare Waterfall in South Garo Hills - Baghmara Campers
Photo by Baghmara Campers

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Photo of author
Awarded by Meghalaya Tourism, Joydeep Phukan is a travel writer & a certified mountaineer based in Assam of Northeast India. He is on his mission to travel offbeat India and share his stories and tips about culture, travel & adventure with you through The Gypsy Chiring Blog.

22 thoughts on “Exquisite Wari Chora in Meghalaya – South Garo Hills Tourism”

  1. Beautifully described!! I am leaving for Meghalaya next week and I have 1.5 year old infant. I hope that will be able to visit South Garo hills. The journey seems to be very long from Guwahati to Wari Chora! Let’s see.. fingers crossed ✨

    Reply
    • Hi Suravi,

      Yes, to go to Wari Chora you must keep 3 days extra in your Meghalaya trip. Also, Wari Chora will be closed from next month. I am glad you chose to go in April.

      Make sure you attend it during weekdays and not weekends to avoid both local and tourists from other states.

      Reply
  2. Great! Its really wonderful article cum information guide…. Hope to visit the same in near future… Thank you so much …

    Reply
    • Hi Ashoke Kumar Das,

      Thank you so much for reading it. You will absolutely love it. Make sure you go with the locals. Mark and his team are great in storytelling about their culture.

      Let me know, if you need help when you plan your trip to Wari Chora.

      Reply
    • Hi Ankita,

      Yes, Wari Chora has lately come a popular destination in Meghalaya. As you are planning to visit, make sure you go from September onwards till April. It remains closed from May due to rain and monsoon months.

      Reply
  3. This is really a great write up. Am highly benefitted by your penning details. Thanks. Continue the drive and introduce us to various hidden gems of the North East (India)……

    Reply
    • Well, if you do the trip with Baghmara Campers, a guide will be there to help you and your boy. There are a few parts in the trail to Wari Chora where you have to carefully descend down as you can see in the article.

      I would suggest you speak to Mark (number in the flyer given in the article). He will clear all your doubts.

      Reply
  4. Amazing writing Joydeep! Very detailed and perfect in explaining. Loved all your pictures too. Keep posting more. Good luck.

    Reply
  5. Great article Joydeep. Love your enthusiasm to bring offbeat places to the forefront. Wishing you many more exciting journeys ahead.

    Reply
    • Hi Lily! I am glad you loved reading it. Northeast India has a huge scope for sustainable eco-tourism. Promoting Northeast India tourism is my goal. Thanks.

      Reply

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